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Thursday, November 01, 2012

Elegant Trifles.



I have come over all Madame Bovary, like Emma, I am finding myself  drawn to "all sorts of elegant trifles".
When I'm not having an Emma B moment, I'm having an Anna K (Karenina) moment, do you remember her  'low necked, black velvet dress which exposed her full shoulder and bosom"? 
Count me in for a spot of northern exposure, but not in black and not in velvet, with my pale, sun-starved skin I'd pass for a pint of Guinness.

It's my school reunion next week, I will dust down some forgotten wisp of fabric lurking at the back of my wardrobe, where I would keep my old hockey stick and school trophies, had I actually made it off the subs bench or won any. When it came to picking sides at sports, they tossed a coin and the loser got me. 

While I'm happy(ish) to wear something I already have this is my fantasy outfit, consider it a 
cashmere headbutt to everyone on the lacrosse team who mocked me for being fat.









Oh and while I'm fantasising I'd like this hair and face while I'm at it.


Or this one, I'm not fussy Fairy Godmother.

....



Talking of fat, have you heard?
Frenchwomen  are getting fat, obesity rates have doubled in France over the last 15 years. 
The rest of Europe is rather...well, the Germans are enjoying a spot of schadenfreude, the Italians are pretty nervous, the last thing they need are gloriously heaving breasted Frenchwoman on their doorstep, the Finns are of course  too drunk to care.  
The Brits?  Well we think they brought it on themselves with all that oh la la French foxy minx stuff. Let's hope it puts an end to the  Frenchwomen don't get fat myth, that's been the most enduring urban myth since the line that Jimmy Saville hated kids.

*Inspired, I picked up my rusty old kitchen scissors and cut my hair,  (I was in one of those moods, don't tell me you haven't had one, they often end in tears) my curls bounced back and I now have the mop above, don't say blogging isn't inspirational.




 

84 comments:

  1. Hello Tabitha

    Enjoy your school re-union.

    Your choice of shoe is much more elegant than the one pictured with the RL gown.
    Should the dress be available in silver lace, similar to the one you featured, I like it more than the RL(perhaps I am not a fan of RL's designs)

    I am not surprised to hear of the statistics concerning weight gain among the French. I blame cup cakes. They should have left our little fairy cakes alone and not embellished their tops.

    Helen xx

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    Replies
    1. I think American cupcakes are definitely fattening up us Brits, they haven't taken over in France, their patisserie shops can't be beaten

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  2. Hi there,
    New at your blog which I discovered thru Jennifer - a well styled life.
    I like very much your sense of humor!!!
    Of course you know how Emma B or Anne K ended... May I suggest you find less depressing models? :-)
    Also, I do confirm that French women can really get fat... (especially when they live in the US like I do and become car addicted/dependent)
    I'll be back on your blog as I really appreciate it.
    Enjoy your day!
    Anne (Playing With Scarves)

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  3. Good point, I'm always drawn to flawed dark heroines.

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  4. Brave Tabitha, enjoy the school reunion - you will be amazing whatever you wear. Love those fantasy accessories, especially the bee bag! I've always loved Anna Karenina: maybe I like a tragedy??

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  5. Have fun...show your beautiful self off :) My highschool reunion passed, but I was unable to go being over here. Though, I did see some pictures and everyone looks older than me, so I am of course happy for that. I was teased relentlessly in school. I'm kind of glad I didn't have to go :) But, you go and have fun :)) xx

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  6. Brave woman going to a school reunion, you show 'em.
    Anna Karenin? A cautionary tale for all about the illusion/delusion of love.
    Doing your own haircut? We all know don't drink and snip, it can only end in tears.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Claire: I wouldn't trust hairdresser, when I lived in Hampstead I had a great one, he would send a junior out for two large bourbons before a haircut one for him and one for me.

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    2. A very sensible arrangement!

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    3. Is he still there?
      Had mine pruned back hard to a 'Halle'. But always looking for a good hair-wrangler in the Old Smoke.
      I'm a bit sick to death of the 'WAG' common as muck do that looks like cheap nylon extensions, as sported by the likes of Z list Chantelle H et al.
      How do you cut yours Tabs?

      Delete
    4. C: I think his salon is, Mad Lillies but I think he sold it.

      I just part it at the back pull it to either side at the front and snip, I have messy hair, so I don't need to have a perfect line at the bottom.

      Delete
    5. Heath Street. I'll give it a whirl next time and report back.
      It may be a while though, after the scissor happy Italian incident.

      I've tried cutting my own using the head down one cut method. Works well with wave hair.

      I never could understand how a game we play at school in the UK, is played only by grown men wearing lots of padding in the US. It would be funny to see British girls V US men in a lacrosse match. I know who'd win.

      Was your HM a Camilla Fritton?

      Delete
  7. I've never been to a school reunion, though I hear people are often surprised that I'm not behind bars or languishing in rehab! Give me a few more years, I say! I love your fantasy outfit, you'd look fab in that dress. Have you shortened your tresses to the length of Halle's? I need a pic!

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    1. Sulky when it's dried its Olivia length but much longer when wet, my hair is a bit curly but when it gets long it straightens out.

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  8. Oh I've been hyperventilating over the costumes for the new Anna K flick. They are so beautiful. You will look gorgeous in whatever you wear to the school reunion, and I can't believe you hacked off your own hair?! We just had it confirmed on the news last night that 70% of males are overweight or obese in Australia. The irony was that the Government department spokesman who made the announcement was, himself, severely overweight.

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    1. Heidi: I always do my own hacking, i think I spend £1.50 on beauty every year.

      The Anna K costumes are stunning aren't they?

      Aussie males- I always thought they'd be fit and rugged with all the good weather you have.

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    2. no they're not ..trust me . A report came out in my state (NSW) about the high percentage of children who were unable to do age appropriate physical activites ..of the PE sort that is .

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  9. That length of hair is perfect, longer than shoulder length yet still bouncy. I think Halle Berry has gone back to her super-short hair, she was on the Ellen show. She looks good in anything.
    I blame soda for the obesity rates in France, I noticed so many people drinking coke in Paris. I think even the diet stuff puts on weight, it encourages a sweet tooth. And salty greasy food.
    Love the dream reunion outfit. I've never been to a class reunion I think it would be both fun and terrible at the same time. But you're brave, we all knew that!
    xo!

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    1. Yes, I think it will be fun and awful!

      So with you on coke and diet coke, I stay away from the diet stuff, it makes me so hungry that I overeat like billyoo.

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  10. Can't wait to see the haircut Tabitha! Sad to see the obesity rates are up pretty much everywhere. Ugh. As for reunions, I regrettably was a student council officer, and am therefore roped into planning the reunions forever. Currently planning our 20th for next year. I actually have had a great time at all the reunions -- everyone's much more pleasant now that they've grown up!

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    1. M: oh I hope so! Will report back after it's all over.

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  11. Hello Tabitha:
    What courage to attend a school reunion something which, on balance, we should avoid like the proverbial plague. May you be tempted to post on it? We do so hope.

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    1. Yes but I will have a stiff drink before I go, and yes, if "they" don't mind I'll take pics.

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    2. flasks also come in handy.

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  12. I've attended two reunions now, and found them not worth the trouble. But I hope yours is more fun. Even back in 2007 on our first visit to Paris, I noticed plenty of French women who were more Corgi than Whippet, not obese but certainly not pipestem thin either. Pictures of the hair, we want pictures!

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    1. yes, pictures, pictures!

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    2. If I'm bored, I'll leave early, it will probably end up like yours.

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  13. SHEAR CONFIDENCE Reunions, another major reason for extended cocktail hours, but I still avoid them religiously. My HS shuttered it's hallowed halls a few years back - now instead of alumnae fundraising letters I get missives about class action suits. Another Bravo T. on chopping own mop! If I tried that I'd never get the two sides to match, passable in the asymetric '80s but not now. (Find humour in and enjoy party.)

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  14. tabs you could go in a burlap sack and look glamorous. i hope you will please take a pic or two for us. please!

    now explain to me what exactly you did to your hair? you did not cut it short, did you?

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    Replies
    1. No just lopped off three inches.

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  15. Reunions = first crushes. Love that, and hope you get to flirt a lot. I can't help but be happy that French women are gaining weight. Sick of the "French Women Don't Get Fat" thing too. Actually, a bit sick of all the French superiority that is all over the blogosphere. I just cut my hair, a lot, but I have a bad cold, so can't tell if I like it or not.

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    1. Kathy me too, I just don't get the obsession with French women/Laduree etc etc.

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    2. Kathy - send me a hair pic when you feel better.

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  16. I was just in Paris earlier this month, didn't notice an uptick in avoirdupois, probably because I couldn't see through the fog of Gauloises. Did the dangers of smoking pass by the French? Re: Halle Berry. I find her breathtaking when she's got her pixie cut, so much more so than in any of her incarnations with longer hair or wigs. She seems to have appalling taste in men, I believe she even admitted so herself in Die Another Day, but que sera, sera.

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    1. B: yes long hair smothers her beautiful bone structure.

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  17. ...but pale, sun-starved skin is Sexy!
    Did You cut Your Hair short?...well done, I guess Your hair looks great now.
    Ciao

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    Replies
    1. No I'd never have short hair, armpit length.

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  18. Oh do have fun at that reunion. I'm betting that you'll look smashing, as you did when you took your Mum away on that weekend for her birthday.
    Give them cause to turn their heads now that you've grown up.

    I think we are all getting fatter...

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  19. I'm like M and was in Student Government in HS so have been on the planning committee of most reunions. Ours was last summer and it was a hoot. It was fun to see people and make new connections.
    You will look amazing in anything you wear and I'm sure your freshly chopped hairdo will be the envy of many. Have fun!

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  20. This should be fun as the lacrosse team will be the fat ones now. Wish I could see their jaws drop when they see you. Went to our reunion and couldn't believe how people had let themselves go. Will be interested to hear your take on it.

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  21. I can't wait to see your new hair - you are going to knock those nasty lacrosse players dead! Interesting about Paris, how will all those "French Women don't get fat" dieting books survive now?

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    1. It was only three inches, it probably won't even show!

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  22. Dear all: haven't shorn my locks, I'm sure you won't even see a difference, when wet before it was below boob, now it's at my armpits. But much curlier now and more manageable.

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  23. I am terrified of "reunions." Where were the "unions" to begin with, I ask. Those that I care to have kept up with I have kept up with. Of those I have not seen in a while I liked the dead ones best and the living ones I presume are golfers . What would we talk about? I tremble.

    I like the idea of a cashmere head butt and I pray that the lacrosse girls have gone to fat . Doubtless most have. Most important to have the husband appearing well turned out, supremely happy and rich. The insides of their mouths will be chewed to pulp.

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    1. Michael: I liked the dead ones best too, I was just saying, that, three old chums will be absent alas.
      Oh no husband, he didn't go to my school and he's ten years younger and has about £1.50 to his name!

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  24. I adore reunions! The women seem to fare better than the men, I think. Our class cuties from high school married each other and were quite fat by the 20th. And the plain girl was a knockout!

    Dress the hell up and have fun, and yes, leave if bored immed.

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  25. You would look so fabulous in that outfit and that dove grey is so elegant and soft. Wish I could cut my hair and it would boing right up like that, mine is like the straw they feed to the retired donkeys in Cornwall (I have been to that farm)

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  26. You are very brave to go to your reunion! Never never never for me.

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  27. Ah! You will you tell them all how fabulous you are just by walking through that door. You will be divine, as you already are.

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  28. Oh you need to impress at the school reunion. Mine only happens every 10 years. The outfit takes great thought it is fascinating to see who has blossomed, aged, just had a baby etc etc. an entire post could be written on this it was funny how the same groups come together. Have a great time

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  29. Tabs, I can't wait to see you all ready for your reunion. I hope you have fun! Is hubs going? He may need to keep the flock of men away from you sense you were chubbier back then. I need you to come here and help me to lose weight! I blame my beautiful country for spreading our processed foods to the other country's. Poor France. Us Americans are very manipulative as we want to be the best and if France is fat then they can't be better than us at something.;)

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    1. No, he wasn't at my school. It's just my year.
      I've just managed to lose my extra weight, I put quite a bit on and have had a really tough time knuckling down to it.

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  30. Tabs, can't wait to see both what you select to wear for your reunion and also your gorgeous hair. I am sure you are going to knock the socks off your ex-school mates. Make an entrance Sweetpea ,and work the room like I imagine you know exactly how too ;-)

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  31. I think November is a lovely time for a class reunion, given its propensity for doom and gloom and darkness before the December parties are on full throttle. My 30th class reunion was last year. The men we fat and bald. I found the women trying much harder though I think there was an over-abundance of breasts. That is just me - why is it that the ladies with ample busoms try so hard to hide them????

    I love it all, and I am sure you will be the belle of the ball. Surely none can match you in the wit department? Is your beloved attending too? Mind went with me but I think he would have enjoyed a root canal more!

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  32. Glad the French women are putting on a pound or two - there's hope for the rest of us then!! I have only been to one school reunion, and found it ridiculously stressful. And was struck by the irony that all the "beautiful" girls had ended up in suburbia with 2 or 3 husbands while the "unpopular" girls had gone off to have fabulously interesting lives. xx

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  33. Enjoy your reunion! I know you will look amazing in your choices. Loving the grey fantasy choices also . I am with you on the pale flesh issue, living in the frozen North and all! xx

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  34. I am dying to see what your hair looks like now! I am sometimes tempted to take scissors to my own hair, but I know I would regret it. Well, I missed out on my 10 year high school reunion (oh darn!) - no need to revisit that stage of my life! I hope you have fun at your reunion, I am sure you will knock everyone's socks off.

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  35. Oh Tabs you are right to be a little anxious over the reunion (I just attended my 30th last month) but do go as it in the end will be worth all the temporary regression, silly drama, and an awkward moment or two. In my own case, I was reminded why I left (fled!) for the big city for its energy and cultural offerings as most of my classmates remained close to home. I have almost nothing in common with those people I grew up with aside, quite significantly, the fact my early formative years (age 5-18) were spent entirely in the company of these people and that is a very strong bond. As the other Thomas Wolfe wrote "You can't go home again" is apt, to look in after a long time away can be enrichingly revelational...especially if you do a little 'scandalous' drunken sport-smooching with an old crush to liven things up--Tally ho!

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    1. I should also mention that Julie Delpy was among the pioneers in this French movement you cite as her lush hindquarters caught my eye when she was an ingenue. I'm told that on Chicago's south side to acquire a caboose that large, a girl must consume her weight in red beans & rice.

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    2. 'scandalous' drunken sport-smooching with an old crush to liven things up--Tally ho!

      Love it! Alas my crushes were all in the years above.

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  36. Do you have Banana Republic stores in the UK? It's my new favorite, lately. They have just come out with a Special Collection designed by the Anna Karenina costume designer, apparently. I saw a few pieces in the store yesterday, no sweeping velvet cloaks, but a nifty fake fur collar, a black lace-front cardigan, a lovely pearl-trimmed black satin clutch, & so on.

    Regarding the reunion, just swan in there and be your fabulous self. I've been to two of mine and one of my hubs. The 10-year one was pretty fun, but most people still kind of fit into their high school categories. By the 20th, things were a bit more interesting, because people had become different things than one might have expected. By that I mean, some of the purely average kids had become quite successful, some of the plain girls were glam, and some of the football stars were now paunchy & balding. Perhaps worst of all, some people looked exactly the same as in high school, by which I mean they wore the same style of clothes and the same hairstyle as they did in the 70s.

    I would not bother to go to another reunion, I don't think.....at this point it's mostly the same people who go each time, and none of those were my close friends. Plus with Facebook, my curiosity about what people look like has pretty well been satisfied. My class has an informal reunion at someone's house every summer, and they post pictures on Facebook. Last summer's pictures were enormously gratifying, as I felt I looked darn good compared to most of them!

    ---Jill Ann

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    1. That's the thing, I doubt any of my old chums will be going either.

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  37. Good luck with the reunion. Marvelous clutch.

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  38. Lacrosse or hockey at high school equals rather chunky in middle years. Or so I hope. Since I've no desire to return to the slaughterhouse, no idea if this is true. Sleek warm grays should be smashing - think of those lovely Baroque pearls! Anyway - trust you will enjoy yourself.

    The French do good perfume and champagne. We've got good sparkling wines in Australia, but nothing beats the old Guerlain fragrances.

    And sadly, Australia has a culture of very heavy drinking. That, combined with a growing ineptitude around food and a high urban (deskbound) population tends to mean weight goes on and stays. Mind you, just got back from western Queensland and there are a large number of hefty people there too. Food choices are much narrower as well - most fresh food comes in on road trains, so it's expensive...

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  39. oh the more than 10 year reunion....my sister commented her school mates who had been young wives at her 10th had been replaced by wife number 2 by the time the 20th rolled around..

    My 30th was a ball..sure yours will be too.!


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  40. Pics please, of the curlier and more manageable mane. And pics of all the cashmere headbutting.

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    1. Tiff: it's just the same as my hair in last year's posts.

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    2. I just went to a year ago and indeed, your hair is as above. Gorgeous. The best part was spotting you in sequins, ha. Alrighty then, I only need pics of the cashmere headbutting.

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    3. Tiff: I have a 16 year old silver grey sequin cashmere cardi. You should have seen me when I was young, I was done up to the nines all the time - I have some really funny pics.

      Delete
  41. Never been to a school reunion yet. Mainly because I graduated a year early and no one has me on their list. Also because I'm unlikely to fly home from Britain just for that sort of thing. On the other hand, it's just about the ultimate one-up, living here, married to a Brit. Can't be bothered, though. Those are gorgeous shoes and I'm sure you'll look fab. I remember the days of long hair I could cut myself, just like you describe. Once you go shorter, those days are done, sadly, though I can actually cut my own hair if I need to. I have done it and gone out in public after. I think you'd look great in black velvet, not like a pint of Guinness at all (what a great line, though!).

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  42. Urban myth, my arse.

    Put down that cupcake and stop reading rubbish.

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    Replies
    1. So you think all French women are thin?
      Interesting.
      Arse? Well you should know as a Brit that we have tiny fairy cakes and not Anerican cupcakes.

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    2. Of course not all French women are thin. To make a statement like that would be rubbish. What you - and I- are both alluding to is the typical urban, fashionable, working French female. The born Parisienne, Marseillaise, etc. This particular bird is definitely of the thin variety.

      No exceptions to the rule.

      As to 'arse' ... I happen to be Swedish. Et alors!? ;)

      Delete
    3. Anon, completely agree. And who knew Swedes were also fans of the 'arse' !

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  43. Each time I speak to my French girlfriends about these myths - French women don't get fat or French Chic - they're gobsmacked. I guess we often romanticize the country but I've seen overweight people on the streets of Paris and more often than not, badly dressed women. I guess it depends on which part of Paris you go to. Funnily enough, I've seen portions getting bigger and bigger in France. There were a few times when I just looked at the waiter when he plonked the plate down on the table. Geez. The meat is enough to feed 3 carnivorous men, not just lil ol me.

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    1. CCC: Yes it does depend on where you are, very much so.

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  44. I hated school and schooling, have worn "school clothes" for Hallowe'en, and luckily have fallen off enough address lists that I don't have to give reunions any thought now. There were some life-saving teachers, I hope they ended well.

    On the other hand if I looked like you I would give serious thought to swanking in, looking bored, leaving early.

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  45. You'll be the brightest, hottest, and most interesting flower there Tabs!

    I'm going to cling to my French women don't get fat myth so I can continue eating my bread and chocolate...and the occasional glass of wine of course, with out guilt!
    xo J~

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    1. I would never give up bread,it saddens me to see it so maligned.

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  46. I have taken scissors to my own hair, and the result was always tears. Never stopped me from making the mistake over and over however.
    School reunions are really just about showing the old "popular crowd" how much better you've done and how crappy their lives have become.
    Have fun...I'd need several drinks to brave one myself.

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    1. Yep, I plan on doing just that!

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